In the UK the Act of 1918 gave some women the vote for the first time. It laid a foundation for the introduction of universal suffrage 10 years later, which saw women win equal voting rights to men. But as Loot’s work makes clear the glass ceiling is still in operation and women are still fighting.

Rise of the Suffratek
We have strived for empowerment, but still equality remains elusive.
A hundred years of representation, the glass ceiling is still repressive.
Work as equals, to a point, at least as good as you, often better.
If a woman exists who doesn’t know that, then I have not met her.

But still imbalance, the criteria to match, a pure, male attribute file.
Can I do the hours, be single minded, match hostile with hostile.
Well hear this, I don’t want to, why benchmark me against failure.
Watch me network, watch me task, I am success, not your caricature.

Don’t think of me as fluffy and for God’s sake, don’t call me love.
But think of me as intense power, sheathed in a velvet glove.
See me as you choose to see me, that’s your weakness, not mine.
If you just fixate on the surface, you will miss the intellect behind.

Deal with stress better, live longer, hold the key to future generations.
Your physicality, now redundant, we rise, the mothers of invention.
Not for us, the chains of protest, not for us, a public, equine suicide.
Our revolt, Suffratek, bring you to your knees, we will not be denied.


More people are writing and thinking about work based poetry. Does this poem make you think of anything? Send your thoughts to editor@organisationalpoetry.com

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Featured image : Pablo Picasso – Portrait of Dora Maar, 1937


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